Over Easter I decided to rearrange my writing room. I have that dream – a room of my own in which to write. It is almost perfect, but, as always, there are compromises. I need to fit into it my desk, which is a large old Victorian pine table, with flaps and a pitted, stained surface, and my mother’s piano – a hundred year old upright, on which I dream of achieving something better than my current Grade II skills – and the double piano stool my father made. There is also a large modern filing cabinet that I share with my husband, a wide bookcase full of poetry, a floor-to-almost-ceiling set of deep shelves (Sally Army) full of files, dictionaries etc. a cabinet, a working chair, a reading chair and an assortment of box files, document wallets etc without a home and a large wastepaper basket. Plus the photos and paintings (all by, or of, friends and family) on the walls.
There is no way all this will fit elegantly into a room 13 x 10 foot square. I don’t attempt elegance, but I am fanatic about practicality. I need to reach or see everything important. I am also keen on a sense of space. I might not have done anything about the urge to move the furniture, if I had not had another rejection for Border Line from an agent. It was very warm and friendly – though clearly a standard email – and they no longer surprise of hurt, but a little displacement activity often ensues.
So now I am sitting sideways on to the wide, low window, looking out onto the new paths and bed I have been working on and yesterday I cleared my desk and continued working on one of Border Line’s less satisfactory characters.
Since drafting this I have moved the piano. This required a certain amount of weightlifting attack, guile and a lot of leverage with undignified positions sitting with my back to most solid object, the filing cabinet. It was only when the piano was finally in position that I realised that I had switched off the socket (now behind the piano) for the much needed lamp. After some pointless fishing with torch and bamboo, waited for EG to come home and help.
All working now and miraculously my back is still OK. Not much work on Border Line, but an important correction in Writing to a Ghost achieved. Unless the weather makes path work possible tomorrow, I will surely WRITE.